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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Axel Roesler
ART 131
Seattle Campus

Alternative Approaches to Art and Design

Presentation of process through which artists discover and translate ideas, feelings, and concerns into images or objects. Use of a wide variety of methods and approaches, from traditional to technological, to promote visual expression. Discussion and critiques leading toward better understanding the creative process.

Class description

Design Thinking: curiosity, empathy, ideas and innovation

The term 'Design Thinking' has gained broad popularity in fields as varied as business, medicine, education, and government as a framework to apply design techniques to complex design problems. Examples include health care, fixing inequalities in public education, finance, global health, and design for democracy. 

Student learning goals

Design thinking is comprised of five steps: 1. Understand the design situation, 2. Empathize with the people affected by the design, 3. Develop ideas collaboratively with participation of member of the audience affected by the design, practitioners, stakeholders, and domain experts, 4. Communicate ideas effectively to acquire resources for design development and implementation, and 5. Assess the impact of the design to evaluate change.

General method of instruction

We will explore cutting edge design methods and techniques to envision ideas for a desirable future. You will acquire a solid understanding and toolkit to foster innovation in your field by applying systematic ideation techniques, participatory and collaborative design methods, storytelling and visualization techniques to develop compelling ideas and present these effectively in front of various audiences that have the means to make a difference.

Recommended preparation

This class is targeted at students from all majors and design students. No previous design experience is required.

Class assignments and grading

Three design projects will be assigned to individual students and student teams. Additional reading assignments form the basis for in-class discussions. Students will be graded on the quality of design projects, in-class presentations, and in-class discussions.

3.9-4.0 The highest possible performance in all aspects of the course with work exemplifying exceptional quality. Exhibits outstanding creative potential.

3.5-3.8 Exhibits creative potential with superior performance in most aspects of the course; high quality in the remainder. Well prepared for subsequent courses in the field.

3.2-3.4 High performance in most aspects of the course. Very good chance of success in subsequent courses in the field. Exhibits some creative potential.

2.9-3.1 Good performance in some of the course; satisfactory performance in the remainder. Exhibits some creative potential. Good chance of success in subsequent courses in the field.

2.5-2.8 Demonstrates the minimum amount of research needed to complete the course with satisfactory performance.

2.2-2.4 Met basic requirements in most of the course, with the remainder being somewhat substandard.

1.9-2.1 Evidence of some learning but generally substandard performance. Marginal chance of success in subsequent courses in field.

0.7-1.8 Little evidence of learning. Poor performance in all aspects of the course. Totally unprepared for subsequent courses in the field.


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Axel Roesler
Date: 05/01/2013